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Eviction sword over 20,000
Cong comes to their rescue;
To stage dharna in front of MC office
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
With the Municipal Corporation issuing notices of eviction to residents having houses within 328 feet on either side of National Highway No-1 from Samrala Chowk to Jalandhar bypass here, a sword is hanging over at least 20,000 people who fear losing their houses and commercial establishments.

Hundreds of big and small houses, shops, dyeing units, petrol pumps, departmental stores, hotels and other commercial establishments are facing eviction within 3 km stretch of Jalandhar bypass since the High Court has directed the authorities clearing of the NH-1.

The notices have been issued much to the chagrin of residents, who are feeling that they are suffering for none of their fault as the civic body allowed them to build houses on the land falling in 25-30 residential colonies.

They said they never knew they would be made to unsettle like this, many years after they had spent their life savings on building shelters.

‘‘My father built our house on this land in 1975. Since then we are living here but we have been asked to evict it. We do not know where to go,’’ said Nachhattar Singh, a resident.

Several others, who spent lakhs on building hotels and other commercial complexes, said they never knew their lakhs would go down the drain. "We want somebody listens to us and our plight. Only then, he will know what we are going through," said an owner of a restaurant.

A petrol pump owner said they there had at least seven petrol filling stations in the areas that were issued no objection certificates by the district administration and the MC. "I took 11 NOCs from different departments. If this was illegal they should have told me there and then. I would not have invested, " he said.

While the residents are suffering, Congress leaders in the state have decided to oppose the move tooth and nail. Senior leaders, including Punjab Pardesh Congress Committee president Mohinder Singh Kaypee, former president Shamsher Singh Dullo, AICC general secretary Manish Tewari and Youth Congress president Ravneet Bittu Kotli will lead a massive dharna outside the corporation office on January 29.

Dimple Rana, District Youth Congress president, organised a meeting of the Congress leaders today to make arrangements for dharna.

He said though the HC had passed a direction and they honoured its decision, the district officials could denotify this road as NH-1 and instead could set up another road from outside the city as notify that as GT Road and help so many poor people.

‘‘Earlier also the Ghanta ghar road was the GT Road. The government then set up Jalandhar bypass and named it as GT Road. They can still rename the Jalandhar bypass as a link road instead of the GT Road,’’ said Rana.

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UGC Pay Scales
Teachers hold protest rallies
To go on mass casual leave on January 28
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
On a joint call given by the Punjab Federation of Universities and College Teachers’ Organisation (PFUCTO), the teachers held protest rallies for about two hours in almost all educational institutions in the city.

The teachers are demanding early implementation of the UGC pay-scales. Hundreds of teachers participated in the rallies held at local colleges as well as PAU. President of Government College Teachers' Association Prof Jaipal Singh said though the Central government had declared to give 80 per cent grant for the purpose, the state government was dilly dallying on its 20 per cent share.

“When the state government is bound to adhere to the decision, why is it delaying implement the notification?” said Prof Jaipal.

The faculty of PAU staged a dharna from 11 am to 1 pm today in front of the Thapar Hall as a mark of protest against the “callous” attitude of the state government in implementation of revised pay-scales of university and college teachers as notified by the Ministry of Human Resource and Development (MHRD) on December 31.

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Fund Bungling Case
Strike enters fourth day
Rakesh Gupta

Mullanpur Dakha, January 22
The token strike by teachers of Shaheed Col Harchand Singh Sekhon Memorial Government Senior Secondary School, Dakha, today entered the fourth day, as grievances of the teachers were not met with.

The teachers had declared to go on an indefinite token strike on Saturday to protest against policies of school principal Laxman Singh.

He is being accused of corrupt practices to extend his service illegally and bungling of amalgamated funds meant for sports, medicine, building and other development of the school.

Rashmi Kalsi, a science mistress of the school, had accused the principal of withholding the accounts register to be maintained by her and forcing her to enter bogus expenses’ vouchers.

The matter got exposed when circle education officer Ashok Kumar Bhalla from Nabha detected irregularities in it and the principal blamed her for these irregularities.

However, principal Laxman Singh is terming the strike as unfortunate and unwarranted as it gives bad vibes to students of the school.

The teachers said the strike would continue till the principal was transferred or dismissed from his duties.

They said the higher authorities had been apprised of the situation of the school and if no justice was done they would stage a dharna outside the school premises and if needed at the mini secretariat, Ludhiana, in front of office of the DEO.

Yesterday district education officer Sudesh Bajaj visited the school. She assured the striking teachers that proper action will be taken against the principal if found guilty of the allegations levelled.

She checked the records and is said to have found some irregularities in it. She said she would be putting the case before the senior authorities so that the grievances were properly redressed.

Presently the agitating teachers are demanding removal of the principal from the school, his termination from the service for fabricating his false date of birth, surety from the education department that the GP fund and other records are not tampered with by the president, the inquiry of misuse of funds by the principal and unconditional apology for implicating two teachers Narinder Singh and Parminder Singh Toor in frivolous case.

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National Insurance to pay Rs 50,000
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 22
Terming the denial of a mediclaim to be unjustified, the Permanent Lok Adalat (PLA) has ordered the National Insurance Company to pay Rs 50,000 to a consumer.

Chairman of the lok adalat C D Gupta and its members, R S Khokar and Nand Lal, pronounced the order while deciding the complaint moved by Baljit Singh Lotey of Janta Nagar, Ludhiana.

The lok adalat directed the company to make the payment within 45 days, otherwise it would have to pay the amount, along with 9 per cent interest per annum from the date of filing the petition.

The complainant had submitted that he had taken a Mediclaim policy from the Dhandari Kalan branch of the National Insurance company in Feburary, 2000. Thereafter, he used to get it renewed every year. The latest policy was valid from Feburary 3, 2007, to Feburary 2, 2008.

On April 4, 2007, he fell ill due to chest pain. He was hospitalised in SPS Apollo Hospital, Ludhiana.

He was diagnosed of having some heart problem. He remained hospitalised for a couple of days.

Thereafter, he lodged a claim with the insurance company and submitted the requisite bills. However, the insurance company repudiated the claim on flimsy grounds and caused him undue harassment.

On the other hand, officials of Insurance company pleaded that the consumer was having pre-existing disease at the time of taking policy. It was pleaded that the claim was rightly repudiated by the company.

But after appreciating the evidence on record, the forum did not find the version of the insurance company to be correct.

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Chips to keep track on jumbos
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
To prevent the sale of elephants, nine jumbos of Ludhiana have been implanted with microchips by the wildlife department under the project elephant of the government of India aimed at protecting these animals under the Schedule I of Protection of Wildlife Act, 1972.

After waiting for two years when the government had directed the state wildlife authorities to implant microchips in elephants in the states, the wildlife department implanted passive transponders with an injection beneath the skin of right ear of nine elephants out of a total of 10 in the city.

The wildlife department is on the lookout for the tenth elephant, whose owner did not turn up today. At the same time, the department turned down the requests of two more elephant owners for implanting the microchipped in jumbos.

‘‘They were not registered with the wildlife department so they could not be implanted with the device. We need to do a lot of paper work before we could implant these as according to census, there are 10 elephants in Ludhiana out of a total of 17 in the state, " said Mahavir Singh, Divisional Forest Officer, Ludhiana.

The elephants were implanted passive transponder by Chatt Bir Veterinarian Dr Nirmaljit Singh in presence of PC Atalia, Deputy Director, Chatt Bir zoo, CAPE-India, Chief Coordinator and member, Punjab State Board for Wlildlife, Dr Sandeep K Jain, Dr Rajiv Bhandari, member, Punjab State Board For Wlildlife, DFO Mahavir Singh, Inspector, Wildlife, Varinderpal Singh, and Rakesh Jain, Animal Welfare Officer.

The elephants are most endangered animal. The implantation was recommended as this will help in identifying and keeping a watch on their well being and impart training as well as subsitute vocations to mahaouts.

Dr Jain stated this would keep a check upon illegal transmigration to other states and replacing the elephants as well as sale of elephants which is banned.

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Cong reorganised amid opposition
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 22
MLA Gurdeep Singh Bhaini has announced reorganisation of the Jagraon Congress. In a press conference, Bhaini handed appointment letters to the new incumbents. Gopal Sharma is now president of the Congress Jagraon urban while Jagjit Singh Kaunke is block president Jagraon rural, Sukhpal Singh Hans, block president Youth Congress Jagraon, Jarnail Singh Hans, vice-president, Harjit Singh Kular, district general secretary and various delegates and secretaries were appointed afresh.

The MLA said Manish Tiwari would be touring the Jagraon constituency from January 24. He claimed that the Congress would win all 13 Lok Sabha seats from Punjab.

However, Congress workers of the Jagraon urban resented replacement of Rakesh Kumar Malhotra with Gopal Sharma. Rakesh Kumar Roda and his accomplices, including Rakesh Malhotra, Kewal Malhotra, Raj Kumar, Som Nath Kapoor, all Congress Jagraon councillors and other exchanged heated arguments over these appointments, as they were not taken into confidence before the appointments.

They wanted to know merits on the basis of which old team was replaced with
the new team.

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Relief for pensioners, pain for PAU
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
There seems to be no end to the woes of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) authorities as the High Court has given a fresh deadline to the varsity to clear all dues of pensioners (with arrears) by March 31, 2009, and the case has finally been disposed of.

Though the varsity authorities, through the application moved in the court, had demanded time extension till the end of June, the court has given further time limit up to March 31. The recent judgement by the court came in the second week of January.

MR Passey, one of the senior pensioners, said the pensioners had to move to the court as they had not been paid the pensionary benefits on a regular basis. He said the university had to find the solution as the Leave Travel Allowance (after every two years) since the year 2004 and the dearness allowance instalment from July 1, 2008, were still pending.

"Though the monthly pension has been cleared by the varsity, we want the financial flow to continue. Pension is the right of retiree, why should we look at others' hands for finances at the dusk of our lives? We had no other option but to knock the doors of the court", said Passey.

Former president of the Punjab Agricultural University Employees Union DP Maur said the issue of pension was of utmost important as about 3000 retirees were affected. He said employees of PAU, too, were trying hard to find some permanent solution to the ongoing problem of financial crunch and to strengthen the pensioners' association.

An official of the university confirmed that the varsity had been told by the court that no further extension on his issue would be given to PAU.

"Adhering to all rules and regulations of the varsity, we will find solution to the problem.” Meanwhile, the authorities are regularly writing to the state government to extend a help on this issue, said the official.

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30 students felicitated at Lohri mela
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 22
As many as 30 students of Government Degree College, Karamsar in Ludhiana district, who had shown outstanding performance during a three-day Lohri mela, were felicitated by organisers during the concluding function held yesterday.

Principal Amrit Varsha presided over the function as the chief guest and vice-principal Nirmal Singh gave away prizes to the outstanding performers. An elaborate cultural programme presented by students marked concluding function.

According to Jasbir Kaur and Harmesh Lal, conveners of girls and boys’ wings, over 30 students of the college were shortlisted for their outstanding performance during the mela. Patriotic songs and skits highlighting social evils were appreciated by all.

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R-Day preparations
Students bear the brunt
Sheetal Chawla
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
The preparations for the state-level Republic Day function, to be organised at SCD Government College for Boys here, are in full swing.

There is a mass scale participation of the schoolchildren in the mega event. The children are having hectic time, as on one side, they have to go to the college for the preparations of various items, dumbles, lazium, march past, girl guide and scouts, giddha, bhangra and other cultural items, but on the other side, their studies suffer as their final exams are drawing near.

According to Sudesh Bajaj, District Education Officer (Secondary), 2,000 students from 50 government schools will participate in the function.

Students of Government Senior Secondary Model School, PAU, are actively participating in almost all the activities, be it giddha, bhangra, girl guide and scouts, dumbles and lazium. More than 100 students of the school are busy in practice of their respective items.

Government Senior Secondary School for Girls is participating in giddha and PT show. As many as 22 students in giddha and 32 students in PT show practice from 9 am to 1.30 pm.

Boys of the Government Multi-purpose School go for the practice of bhangra, dumbles and lazium. The school authorities find it difficult to ferry the children to the venue of the practice.

It has been said by the district authorities that the transport arrangement would be made for ferrying of the children, but in some schools, buses turned up for only one day, and in some other schools, buses never reached at all.

Students are facing lot of inconvenience as some of them go by auto-rickshaw, some on cycles, and some others on foot. All the expenses of the transportation are being borne by the students themselves.

Refreshment given to the children for four to five hour practice includes one banana and biscuit only.

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Villagers protest dumping of garbage by MC
Tribune News Service

Khanna, January 22
A large number of residents from Bagaur village today protested against the dumping of garbage in their village by the MC, Khanna.

They gathered in front of office of the SDM and demanded redressal of the problem. They alleged that the authorities, despite promises, fail to act on their complaint.

Raising slogans against the erring officials of the MC, they threatened to intensify their agitation if the authorities failed to change the place of the dumping ground.

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Rally at Sudhar college
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, January 22
GHG Khalsa College, Gurusar Sudhar unit of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers Union (PCCTU), conducted a rally in the college in support to the call given by the central body of the union.

They struck work for two hours on the college campus. This call was given to implement the new UGC grades for the college teachers. Beside this, the PCCTU is demanding the restoration of 95 per cent grant-in-aid, pension/gratuity, rural allowance etc.

Professor GS Hundal, district president of the PCCTU, urged the members to reach Chandigarh on January 28 for massive rally being organised by the union and AIFUCATO jointly.

Professors Gurdas Singh, Major Singh, Bawa Singh, Rajdev Kaur, Harpreet Kaur, Harcharan Kaur Jaswant Singh and Sushil Kaur expressed views on the ongoing struggle of the union for their rights.

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Training course on pig farming from Feb 2
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
The department of veterinary and animal husbandry extension, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), will organise a "Specialized training course on pig farming" from February 2 to 6, 2009.

During this course, pig farmers will be informed about pig breeds, balanced diet formulation and feeding, vaccination, de-worming, breeding, ideal management practices, hygienic meat production, meat products and marketing strategies.

F Mouwen, a renowned pig scientist from Holland, will deliver a lecture regarding artificial insemination in pig and about commercial pig farming at his place. Special arrangement has been made for a visit to pig farms of the progressive pig farmers.

For any information regarding the course or for registration, Prof and head, the department of veterinary and animal husbandry extension, can be contacted, said an official press note today.

NSS volunteers felicitated

As many as 31 NSS volunteers, who represented PAU in various national integration camps (NIC) sponsored by the ministry of youth affairs and sports, the Government of India, were felicitated by Dr Manjit Singh Kang, VC, PAU, today.

Dr Kang while congratulating the participants for bringing laurels to the university said the PAU volunteers had contributed remarkably towards upkeep of environment, culture and well being of humanity and they were ambassadors of PAU to wherever they participated in the camps. They educated people to work for others' welfare as per "Not me but you", motto of the NSS.

Programme coordinator of the NSS at PAU Dr KS Verma informed that a contingent of 10 boys and girls participated in NIC at Hissar. Two volunteers namely Navdeep Singh and Shifali Sharma were adjudged as the best campers whereas Chet Ram and Shifali were declared the best team members.

He said the second contingent of 10 volunteers participated in NIC at Sri Guru Tegh Bahadar Khalsa College, Anandpur Sahib, wherein the volunteers bagged first and second prizes in quiz and group song competition, respectively, and qualified for the best camper award.

The third group of 11 participants attended the NIC at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, and won first prize in skit and group dance, second prize in debate and third prize in solo dance.

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Govt school students undergo job training
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
The students of vocational studies of Class XI of the government senior secondary schools are undergoing on job training at various business centres. The training period is of 21 days.

Baljeet Singh, a teacher of automobile engineering, at Government Senior Secondary Model School, PAU, said the students of various vocational trades, like knitting technology, automobile engineering, food preservation, computers and horticulture, had gone to get first-hand experience at various centres.

He further added that girls of food preservation had gone to Punjab horticulture department, boys opting for knitting technology had joined Duke fabric, Sagar knitwears, Vishal dressings and many more.

Students of mechanical automobile had gone to stan wheels, Bhullar motors etc. Girls opting for computers are going to computer centres.

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French farmers visit PAU
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
A group of 42 French farmers, along with president Mark Petriat and director Guez Pierre of Dijon Cerealis, a cooperative, visited the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), here yesterday.

The delegation also met Vice-Chancellor Manjit Singh Kang, who provided an overview of the various agricultural issues and researches undertaken by the university. The group showed keen interest in the ecological constraints, especially depleting water table, post-harvest losses and residue management.

Petriat said the team comprises practising farmers, who are growing wheat, oilseeds, sunflower, barley and maize. They showed keen interest in the work undertaken by the university on such these crops.

Petriat wished to collaborate on processing of onion and other vegetables as well. Kang assured the group of all possible help in this direction.

Pierre wanted to know about the job opportunities that PAU students have after completing their programmes. The team had visited New Delhi, Jaipur and Agra.

Leader of the French farmers’ team Christelle said: “The group is organising trips to various countries every two years and added that they were overwhelmed to see the elaborate research and experimental programmes undertaken by the university.”

The group was shown the farm machinery developed by the university, museum of social history of Punjab, museum of water resources of northern India and the crop museum, etc.

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Rainwater projects for 39 SOS villages
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
SOS Children's Villages of India, the Coca-Cola Foundation and Coca-Cola India announced a partnership to implement water conservation projects for a better life for children.

This partnership will ensure sustainable water resources by undertaking rainwater harvesting (RWH) projects at 39 SOS locations spread across the country. The partnership will also support creating or improving the awareness on water conservation and artificial recharge.

The announcement was made jointly by S. Sandilya, president, SOS Children's Villages of India, Atul Singh, president and CEO, Coca-Cola India, and Rakesh Jinsi, secretary general, SOS Children's Villages of India.

The outlay for the project will not exceed Rs 2.80 crore out of which the Coca-Cola Foundation has given a grant of Rs 1.8 crore. SOS Children's Villages of India will contribute the balance through manpower, material and financial resources.

The project at all locations will be implemented by SOS Children's Villages while Coca-Cola India will help develop, along with SOS-India, monitoring, reporting and governance routines for the project.

A National Steering Committee comprising experts from the field of water management, eminent personalities from civil society and representatives from Coca-Cola India and SOS Children's Villages will supervise the implementation and progress of the project.

The project will be completed in the next 12 months and will touch the lives of about 6,000 children growing up in SOS villages and will have ripple effect.

SOS Children's Villages of India is a non-profit, non-government, voluntary organisation, committed to the care of children in need and to strengthening families and communities as a preventive measure in the fight against abandonment and social neglect.

The aim and objective of the SOS Children's Villages of India is to help parentless and homeless children by giving them a family, home and a strong foundation for an independent and secure life. SOS-India is a member of SOS-Kinderdorf International, operational in 132 countries.

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Kolar, Boparai on PAU board
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
The Governor of Punjab has appointed two eminent scientists, Dr Jaspinder Singh Kolar and Dr Baldev Singh Boparai on the board of the management of Punjab Agricultural University, according to PAU Registrar Dr Raj Kumar Mahey.

A renowned agronomist, Dr Kolar has served PAU in various capacities such as head, department of agronomy and director of extension education.

Dr Boparai has served PAU regional stations, Faridkot and Gurdaspur, and KVK, Ferozepur. Dr Mahey said these scientists would be on the PAU Board of Management for three years with immediate effect.

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Sukhbir’s elevation as Dy CM
A power (ful) day for residents too
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 22
The people of Punjab had a reason for smile yesterday. Some smiled because their favourite leader Sukhbir Singh Badal had been elevated as the Deputy Chief Minister, while others did because they had failed to remember when in the past they had a day without any power cut.

Thanks to the swearing-in ceremony of junior Badal, said Narinder Singh of the town, he had not been forced to bask under the sun while doing his work by the power cuts imposed by the PSEB after a long period.

Surinder Kaur from Sidhwan Bet, said she was surprised from where the PSEB had borrowed the surplus electricity that day. The government might be wanting the people to watch the swearing-in ceremony of Sukhbir Badal, she added.

This is not the case here only. The residents of Mullanpur Dakha, Raikot, Sudhar, Humbran and surrounding villages, more or less, had the same views.

Interestingly some local Akali leaders, on the conditions of anonymity, said they wondered how they would explain the shortage of power in the state the next day to the villagers.

The school-teachers were also happy as they could teach the students inside the classrooms. Otherwise, they had their classes in the open for the want of proper light. The workshop owners and shopkeepers, dependent on electricity for their work, were seen in a celebrating mood. Pankaj Kumar, who runs a readymade shop at Raikot, said he dad a saving of about Rs 400 on the day, which he used to spend for purchasing diesel for generator.

The people in the business of supplying electricity by generators also had a great day. Kishanjit Singh of Mullanpur, such an electricity supplier, said he had a saving of more than Rs 5,000 as these days he was to supply power for more than 12 hours during the power cut.

The women were happy too. The streets of the towns were seen barren as all remained indoors. Some were watching television, while others doing their household chores. Kuldeep Singh of Humbran said, “It’s not a bad idea if one or the other leaders have swearing-in ceremony at a regular intervals to avoid power cuts.”

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Folk dances, song contests held
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
Rich culture and traditions of Punjab today came alive during the inter-university and college competitions held by the Rangla Punjab Cultural Club.

The stage for the competition was tastefully decorated with phulkari, dupattas and traditional utensils like surahi and gaagar.

Students from various universities and colleges dressed in traditional Punjabi outfits presented folk songs and dances. Song elucidating the significance of mother in everybody's life was appreciated by everyone present on the occasion.

Folk singer Pammi Bai was also present on the occasion. Speaking on the occasion he said youngsters should take the initiative to save rich cultural heritage of Punjab.

"Everybody is getting allured by the western culture and forgetting their own culture. Punjab's culture is so rich and vast that even foreigners are attracted towards our culture but the sad part is that the preservers of the culture are going far away from it," he added.

Performance of the folk dances of Punjab i.e. giddha and bhangra captivated everybody's heart While girls showed their competence in giddha, boys showcased their talent in bhangra.

The results for the competitions were as follows:
Folk songs:
1. Ranjeet from Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar.
2. Sukhwinder from Punjabi University, Patiala.
3. Prabh Sandhu from Punjab Technical University, Jalandhar.
Folk dances:
Giddha- Dev Samaj College, Ferozepur.
Bhangra- SCD Govt College for Boys, Ludhiana.

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Seminar on donation of body parts tomorrow
Our Correspondent

Samrala, January 22
A seminar will be organised at Mai Bhago College for Women, Ramgarh, on “Donation of human body parts” and “State of rural study in Punjab” on January 24 and on January 28, respectively.

Principal Manjit Kaur Dhillon said the seminar would commence from 10 am in which Dr Glodus of DMC, Dr Baldev Singh, president of the Donation of Human Parts’ Society and vice-president GPI Singh would educate masses and college students during the seminar.

On January 28 president of the Mai Bhago Charitable Trust Mohinder Singh Mangat will preside over the seminar on the state of rural education in Punjab.

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Youth killed in accident
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 22
A youth, Gurmit Singh, of Kalarh village was killed when a speeding tempo hit his motorcycle near Latala village on Ahmedgarh-Raekot road near here last night.

The Dehlon police has registered an FIR under Sections 302 and 279 of the IPC against the owner and the driver of the tempo.

Profusely bleeding Gurmit Singh was shifted to a private hospital here by a police party led by Kulwant Singh, SHO, Latala. Doctors declared him brought dead.

Gurmeet Singh was going to his in-laws village Leelan in Ludhiana district. The body of the deceased was handed over to his family after conducting post-mortem at civil hospital, Dehlon.

1 held with 750-gm ganja

The police nabbed a drug peddler and seized 750 gm of ganja from his possession. According to the police, the accused, identified as Surjit Singh of Salem Tabri, was involved in selling drugs and narcotics to youths and labourers of the area.

A team led by SHO, City, Harinder Singh arrested the accused. The police said the contraband was brought from Himachal Pradesh.

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Thieves strike at 3 places
Decamp with cash, valuables
Our Correspondent

Samrala, January 22
Thieves strike at three places in Samrala yesterday, including two private booths, at the court complex near the police station and the DSP office and escaped with cash and valuables.

According to information, the thieves first strike at No 1 booth of the complex that belongs to DPS Batra and decamped with Rs 10,000, LCD screen, digital camera and printer of about Rs 45,000.

Later they also looted another booth owned by Davinder Singh, which was a few yards away from the first booth and escaped with LCD screen and some cash.

Later they also strike at Garg Karyana Store Trading Company and took away Rs 6,000 and three tins of desi ghee.

DSP Samrala with other police officers visited the site and assured that they will try their best to nab the thieves.

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Industrialist recovered, alleges kidnapping
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 22
Industrialist Vikas Gupta (30) of Model Town extension, who went missing under mysterious circumstances on Tuesday, was spotted in Una and was brought back home by the police here today.

Gupta, who went to pick up his relative’s son from tuition classes near Marriott Hotel on Dugri Road, alleged that some unidentified car-borne persons kidnapped him.

He alleged that the accused, who had their face covered, robbed him of his money, gold ornaments, mobile phone and later pushed him out of a moving car at a secluded place near Una.

The victim said that he somehow managed to inform his parents about the incident and told them his current location.

Police sources said that the role of one of his neighbours has come under the scanner. He is missing since the time of the incident, they added.

SHO Beant Juneja said: “The victim will be medically examined to ascertain whether he was saying truth or the episode was stage managed."

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Jarkhar Festival
Ludhiana eves champion in b’ball
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 22
Ludhiana in the women's section faced a little challenge from Jalandhar whom they outnumbered 46-26 to emerge champions on the penultimate day of the 59th edition of the Senior Punjab Basketball Championship being held during the 23rd Mata Sahib Kaur Sports Festival at Jarkhar village near here today.

In the men's section, Amritsar got the better of Gurdaspur 54-43; Ludhiana outplayed Mansa 69-46.

Gurdaspur outclassed Muktsar 68-61 to advance ahead. In handball, Ludhiana district wrapped up both titles in the boys and girls sections.

In the boy's section, Ludhiana registered an easy victory (27-19) over Patiala while Faridkot scripted 29-18 victory over Mohali to finish at third place.

In the girls’ final, Ludhiana defeated Ropar 22-15 to clinch the title while in the match for hard-line cup, Taran Taran prevailed over Muktsar 8-3 and had to content with third spot.

In hockey (boys), Punjab and Sind Bank Academy beat Sangrur 3-0; Chandigarh Academy routed Grewal Hockey Academy of Kila Raipur 6-0; Jarkhar Academy beat Bahadurgarh 2-0 and Haryana XI blanked Jagtar XI 5-0.

In the girl's section, Chandigarh recorded an easy win of 2-0 against Sports
Wing, Ludhiana.

In volleyball (smashing) in the boy's section, Flex Club outplayed Faraur Club of Ludhiana in straight sets 25-23, 25-13 while in the girl's section STC, Ludhiana, outstaged Khalsa School, Ludhiana 25-16 and 25-10.

In kabaddi, 12 teams competed in the first round. Gurm beat Jaspal Bangar; Lohgarh defeated Alamgir; Latala beat Churpur and Jarkhar beat Pammakhagat.

The Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Punjab, Harish Rai Dhanda, was the chief guest on the penultimate day of this sports extravagnza.

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300 aspirants turn up for SAI trials
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, January 22
More than 300 aspirants turned up on the first day of the selection trials being conducted by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) for its training centre, opposite Guru Nanak Sports Complex, here today.

The three-day trials are being held in disciplines of athletics, basketball, handball, judo, volleyball and weightlifting for boys under the residential as well as non-residential schemes, besides in the judo and volleyball for girls under the non-residential scheme in the age groups of 14 to 19 years.

The in charge of the SAI Training Centre, Ludhiana and coordinator, Punjab, Harbans Singh said on the first day, after the registration of budding players, motor ability tests were held in all six disciplines by a panel of 15 experts deputed by the Regional Directorate, SAI, North Zone at Sonepat.

"These standarised super tests were taken to test athletes' speed, strength, endurance, flexibility and agility which are the basic qualities for any kind of sports movement," Singh added.

Tomorrow, skill and performance tests will be conducted and on the basis of these qualities, the potential players be called for the medical examination, followed by interview to know the physique and mind of the athletes, the in charge said.

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